Uh oh: Pakistani army chief facing coup over coziness with U.S.?

The Pakistani Army is essentially run by consensus among 11 top commanders, known as the Corps Commanders, and almost all of them, if not all, were demanding that General Kayani get much tougher with the Americans, even edging toward a break, Pakistanis who follow the army closely said.

Washington, with its own hard line against Pakistan, had pushed General Kayani into a defensive crouch, along with his troops, and if the general was pushed out, the United States would face a more uncompromising anti-American army chief, the Pakistani said…

During a long session in late May at the National Defense University, the premier academy in Islamabad, the capital, one officer got up after General Kayani’s address and challenged his policy of cooperation with the United States. The officer asked, “If they don’t trust us, how can we trust them?” according to Shaukaut Qadri, a retired army brigadier who was briefed on the session. General Kayani essentially responded, “We can’t,” Mr. Qadri said…

“Adding to this frustration and public pique is the lifestyle that the top brass of all the services has maintained,” Talat Hussain, a prominent journalist who generally writes favorably about the military, wrote in Monday’s edition of the English-language newspaper Dawn. “This is not a guns versus butter argument, but a contrast between the reality of the life led by the military elite at state expense and the general situation for ordinary citizens.”